Just finished reading It for the first time. Mixed feelings although I enjoyed it overall.
It isn’t scary in any of its guises. Every scene it’s in feels like an overly hammed-up 50s horror flick. Conversely, the (many) depictions of bullying are some of the most viscerally disturbing passages I’ve ever read and made my skin crawl. Not sure if this is a deliberate plot device (humans are the scariest monsters), a weakness in King’s writing, or a weakness in my imagination (with respect to It).
It’s the same in the Dark Tower, but King writing about race comes off as such a dated example of ‘woke’ white man. Also, and I know it’s just of its time, but some of Richie’s voices in 1985 read back pretty badly.
And Bev… So I get that budding sexuality is a very real part of that portion of childhood, but the number of descriptions of her body is way too high and made me feel quite uncomfortable. And obviously that scene which seems straight-up creepy and unnecessary.
As is so often the case, King is in desperate need of a good editor. It’s such a trope of his to spend pages reeling off the fates of utterly incidental fringe characters (or randomers introduced purely for the point of dying unpleasantly) and he’s as guilty as ever of that here.
BUT I fucking love his writing when it works. And the 50% of it that works here is sublimely creepy.